Microsoft may be first to offer OS on USB drives

by admin June 26, 2009 at 6:36 pm

Microsoft is considering offering Windows 7 on USB flash drives to make upgrades easier for systems without optical drives, a source claimed on Friday. The unnamed contact explains to CNET that the company is looking at the move to make it easier to upgrade netbooks in particular, which currently need either an external drive or else the elaborate creation of a bootable USB drive. Whether this would involve copy protection beyond a CD key isn’t known.

Other options are still on the table and wouldn’t necessarily involve removable storage. As Microsoft already allows Vista downloads, it may extend that to Windows 7 and automate the process of creating a bootable USB stick from the file. Alternately, customers could visit retailers like Best Buy and have technicians perform the upgrade. These may do it anyways as the move from XP to 7 doesn’t allow an in-place upgrade, instead requiring a complete reinstall and a backup of valuable data.

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